Attention, Headliners! Escape: Psycho Circus 2016 is quickly approaching, and as you add the final touches to your awesome costumes, let’s take a moment to review your plan of attack for the festival weekend. While many of you are loyal Escape attendees, we want share some helpful tips with all of our first-timers so they too can experience the Psycho Circus in all its Halloween glory.

Check out this helpful beginner’s guide to Escape: Psycho Circus, and let us know any of your festival pro tips in the comments below.

Dress up and participate


First things first: You’ll need a sick costume. The best part of Halloween is the freedom to be whomever or whatever you like. There’s a special feeling of freedom you get as soon as you put on your costume; it’s like stepping into someone else’s shoes—and cheerleader outfit and clown mask—for one magical weekend. Let your creativity roam forever free, and express yourself in every which way you can imagine through your costumes. Plus, your getups will be the easiest way to meet new friends via group photos and random meetups.


Speaking of costumes, make sure to read our Do’s and Don’ts


We all know Halloween is about dressing up, and we love seeing your super creative and highly imaginative outfits come to life; Escape wouldn’t be complete without them. Keep those costumes coming, peeps, but remember to read the Do’s and Don’ts before you get too wild. Keep it cool, fun and safe!


Get spooked at scare central: the Psycho Circus


As soon as you step into Escape, you’ll enter the central hub for all things creepy, crawly, and downright frightening at the Psycho Circus. Here’s where you’ll find the heart of Escape and the main area for action. Looking to test your strength? Say hello to the Muscle Man, and challenge him to a game of hammer high-striker. Curious about your future? Visit the fortune teller for a tarot card reading. Spend some time getting lost and spooked at the Psycho Circus.

Download the official Escape app


Headliners, there’s no need to worry about knowing where the heck anything is once you download the official Escape app. Via the super easy-to-use app, you can pull up the helpful festival map and locate the nearest bathrooms, water stations, food and drink vendors, official merch tents, and much more. Don’t know when or where your favorite DJ is playing? Don’t sweat it; the app lists all scheduled set times and the full lineups for both days. Download and browse through the festival app now to see what other fun activities Escape has in store for you. Chances are your phone is already in your hand anyway.


Explore the sounds of Escape


Escape offers many unique stages and diverse sounds, providing a taste of fresh electronic music for everyone. You’ve got the big sounds from Armin van Buuren, the Chainsmokers and Hardwell over at Slaughterhouse. Ghouls’ Graveyard welcomes Eric Prydz, Dash Berlin and Andrew Rayel. Over at Chopping Block, the Bassrush crew is bringing the heavy, ear-pounding bass beats on night one, while things get a little funkier on night two with Rudimental, Four Tet, Joyryde and more. And all weekend long, Factory 93, our dedicated underground brand, is bringing the dark warehouse vibes via the Factory 93 Experience, a fully curated stage featuring the best in house and techno across both days of the festival, located at Cannibals’ Tea Party.

Visit the Escape Asylum—if you dare


Here’s something new for you: This year, Escape introduces one of our most immersive attractions yet via the Escape Asylum. The creative and creepy minds here at Insomniac have been working really hard to combine all the maddening tragedy of Escape, six years in the making, into one haunting experience. Trust us: This isn’t just your ordinary haunted house. At the Escape Asylum, you’ll enter a multisensory journey full of twisted characters, a demented storyline, and disturbed imagination. Did we mention you have to wear a straitjacket and mask during the entire walkthrough? The Escape Asylum is definitely a can’t-miss.

Teleport between stages using the virtual reality booths


Enter a new world and experience Escape: Psycho Circus like never before via our virtual reality booths. This year, we’re powering up multiple VR booths all weekend long to give Headliners a glimpse of what might be the coolest 360 experience ever. Via fancy VR headsets and 360-degree cameras, users are transported between the two mainstages at Escape and placed in the DJ booth, right next to their favorite artists as they perform in real time. Headliners can also opt to check out the VR experience from any of the past Insomniac shows available at the activation, a great way to relive some of the best nights of your life or dive into a new festival world in an immersive adventure. How’s that for a real flashback?

Meet the Escape characters roaming the festival grounds


Keep your eyes peeled, and look out for all the creative characters and roaming performers walking among and creeping behind you at Escape. In fact, we encourage you to plan a scavenger hunt with your friends and take pictures with as many performers coming to haunt join you. Try and find the Majorette Fiends, Misfit Children, Needle Nurses, Burlesque Dancers, and many others.

There’s more to Escape than just the music


Our biggest pro tip ever: Make sure you avoid getting too stuck in the music, and explore the world of Escape. There’s so much to hear, see and do here, so get out there and experience it all. Check out the awesome art, get on the towering Ferris wheel, snap a photo with your festie bestie in one of the photo booths, and meet your new best friends. Make the most of your Escape weekend, and take it all in. For a full look at what awaits you, take a look at the festival map online or on the official Escape app.

Bring warm clothes to donate

Here at Insomniac, we’re all about giving back to the community, and while we’re happy providing you with the best festival experiences, we’d also love for you to help us give to those in need. As the winter weather creeps in, Insomniac Cares is hosting a warm clothing drive at Escape this year. While you’re grabbing your own personal warm essentials as you head out for the festival, grab a little something extra for the people at Helping Hands Pantry in San Bernardino County. The organization helps serve numerous homeless families looking to stay warm this winter. Let’s show them the power of PLUR, Headliners!

Live the VIP life to the fullest


While VIP at Escape has countless amenities—complimentary parking, phone charging stations, signature cocktails, an actual candy bar, and much more—the expanded VIP experience encourages Headliners to explore and engage with their surroundings via dedicated viewing decks, VIP dance areas, tarot card readings, interactive photo booths, a giant Ouija board, and much more. Energize your body and mind as you enjoy VIP water refill stations, a gourmet hot chocolate and coffee bar, and more. Upgrade to VIP—you won’t regret it!

Don’t forget your merch!


It’s our least favorite part, but unfortunately, Escape weekend will come to an end. Visit any one of our merch booths, and take a little piece of the experience with you. We’ll have plenty of official Escape merch items to choose from, including shirts, hats and more. Pro tip: Grab your merch earlier in the night; the best timing is at the beginning of the show. The merch booths get crowded at the end of the festival, and sizes and items begin to sell out later in the night. For those who like to vape up, visit Vape Village and find a wide selection of flavors. Plus, find some more goodies at our Vendor Village, including clothing and apparel.

Escape: Psycho Circus 2016 takes place Friday, October 28, and Saturday, October 29, at the NOS Events Center in San Bernardino, CA. For more information, visit the official website.

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